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US forecasters alert about potential storm aimed at Florida

US forecasters alert about potential storm aimed at Florida

MEXCO CITY (AP) — The U.S. National Hurricane Center issued a bulletin Thursday on an area of low pressure on Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula that could become a depression or tropical storm and head toward Florida’s Gulf coast.

The center called it Potential Tropical Cyclone One, in what could become the first storm of the Atlantic hurricane season. At present, it is not yet even a tropical depression.

A tropical storm watch was issued for the west coast of Florida south of the Middle of Longboat Key and for the east coast of the Florida peninsula south of the Volusia/Brevard County line, as well as for parts of Cuba.

On Thursday evening, the area was centered about 80 miles (125 kms) north-northwest of Cozumel, with maximum winds of about 30 mph (55 kph). It was moving north at about 5 mph (7 kph).

It comes after Hurricane Agatha in the Pacific left at least nine people dead and six missing in the southern Mexico state of Oaxaca, where it hit Monday and set off flooding and landslides.

Agatha was the strongest hurricane since records have been kept to come ashore in May in the eastern Pacific.